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Shawnny B

AC air pump making bad noise...

12 posts in this topic

Hey I was told by a fellow FMer to post this on here. I have a 97 pontiac Grand am that sat for 3 years or so, When I started it back up the AC pump was making a horrable noise. The flex pipe was also busted. IF I let the pump go threw the winter will it hurt anything? is there anything I can do untill I find a replacement?

Thanks for your advise

ShawnnyB

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2.4 - 2.2 - OR 3.1 LITER? it will make a lot of noise but it won't hurt anything untill it falls apart or siezes. What may have happened is some rust built up in between the pulley and the clutch. Most likely it will only get worse. Dorman makes a line of bolt on pulleys that repace a/c compressors. If you do not plan on fixing the a/c this is a good option. If you plan on fixing it in the spring I would not do this. The a/c compressor has to be removed in order to install the pulley leaving the a/c system exposed to the elements (all the plastic and duct tape in the world will not keep out mother nature!).

If it where mine I'd drive it till it fell off! It may be a month it could go forever. At this point its just annoying! You'll know right a way when it falls off if you have the 2.2 or 3.1 because you will lose the power steering. The 2.4 you'll have to wait till you see the battery light. Good luck, and seriously just drive it.

I would however make the exhaust the top priority for your health and safety. Especially with winter right around the corner!

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Wow, did Hovermn call it! he said that you would post right away! I did fix the exhaust today a local guy. as far as the car i have the DOHC 2.4l, hooked up the subs again in it and am expecting a new radio tomorrow from the man in a nice brown suit. I have been debating on spraying in some lube of some sort but havent been sure. I think I might call some salvage yards and pick one up, just not sure how long its going to take to get and do....

Shawnny B

BTW Thanks Air

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Charging the AC may help if it has sat that long.

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Just a thought, but if the AC has completely stopped working, you've lost your defrost. You may want to get that taken care of before the snow flies.....even more!

I'll keep my eyes open for a pump. I've got nothing but time lately!

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You won't really lose your defrost, it will simply be less efficient. The only reason the compressor runs on the defrost cycle is to remove humidity/moisture from the defroster air. The windows will still clear, just not quite as quickly. It will function exactly the same as a vehicle without A/C.

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Here`s a great used car part site.[Please read forum policy before posting again. Thank you.]

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Macgyver is right on the money!!

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I pretty much just went through the same thing.

I turned the defrost(AC) on and the compressor grind and the belt squealed.

I knew what was going on and turned the defrost off and when I got home I disconnected the electrical plug to the AC pump so I could at least use (although not as effective)the defrost.

The compressor locked up and damaged the clutch. It would chirp and grind intermitantly. In a couple months it got to the point where I had to do something about it.

I found a compressor from a bone yard. Problem is my system uses R12 refrigerant. You can't buy that anymore and most shops I talked to can't get it and if you could it cost you around $75 a lb. I could retrofit to R134a refrigerant.

Heres what I was up against. R134a systems are higher pressure then my R12 system so the compressor I found might not work.

R134a molecules are smaller then R12 so I'd need new seals also. The compressor I found wasn't a R134a compressor so I'd be taking a chance that the system would fail.

My system would have to be purged and flushed or R12 and the filter replaced. You see where I'm getting at here, I bought the bypass pulley w/mount for 29 bucks and drive with the window down on hot days.

PS: if you buy the by pass pulley you'll need to buy the mounting bolts because the old ones on your compressor will be too long.

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If the compressor is noisey, it is one of two things, the internal compressor components are bad, this will be determined if the noise is present only when the clutch is engaged. If the noise is always present the bearing the pulley rides on is bad. You can replace the pulley and clutch assy. Depending on where the compressor is located, I have changed many without opening the system, by lowering the engine to access, by removing the compressor and leaving the lines attatched etc. If your problem is internal to the compressor, you can disable the system by removing the electrical connector to the compressor or the pressure switch on the accumulator. If the problem is the pulley, you need to make a decision, when it goes, you will lose the belt and all accessory drive components, ie. water pump, power steering, alternator etc. Whether you replace the compressor or fit it with a by-pass pulley, everything will be the same except cold air. Retrofitting is no big deal, r-12 systems have been running w/r-134 for years without any changes to the system, these seals are not nearly sofisticated enough to care about molecular dimension. The main difference is the oil in the system, and you needn't worry about it.

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Well, Maybe I will have to see if I can disable that electrical plug, but I do hear the noise all the time. I have found a replacement part for it in St. paul for 50 bucks, just dont know if Ill be able to replace it or not. Thanks for all your responses and comments and advise. Hopefully I can just disable the electrical and it will sound fine .... here is to hoping...

ShawnnyB

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If its making the noise all the time even with the A/C off then its more than likely the clutch or bearings in the pulley. If thats the case there is nothing you can unplug to make it go away. The good news is with the 2.4 liter you won't have to worry about the vehicle overheating (water pump is driven off the timing chain) or losing power steering (p/s pump runs off the intake cam)!

Surface, Capt don has the right idea. Have the system sucked down, switch the fittings to R-134 style. Add the neccessary oil and fill R-134 (80% of the capacity of R-12). More than likely you will see component failure (leaking hoses, condensors, evapap) before you will see a seal problem. The new oils are becoming more compatible with the older systems as more and more get retrofitted.

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